blade runner
Courtesy of Warner Bros.

Warner Bros. has set a Jan. 12, 2018, release in North America for Alcon Entertainment’s sequel to Ridley Scott’s “Blade Runner.”

The sequel will star Ryan Gosling, with Harrison Ford reprising his role as Rick Deckard. Denis Villeneuve (“Sicario,” “Prisoners”) is directing. The untitled film will open at the start of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend.

Sony Pictures Releasing International announced last month that it will distribute in all overseas territories in all media. Alcon has a longstanding domestic output agreement with Warner Bros.

The story, written by Hampton Fancher (co-writer of the original) and Michael Green and based on a story by Fancher and Scott, continues several decades after the conclusion of the 1982 original — which was set in a dystopian 2019 Los Angeles with constant rain.

The orginal film, based on the 1968 Philip K. Dick story “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?,” starred Ford as an ex-police officer tracking down escaped genetically engineered “replicants” who had returned to Earth illegally in order to extend their four-year life spans. In 1993, the film was selected for preservation in the U.S.  National Film Registry by the Library of Congress

Principal photography on the sequel is scheduled to begin in July, with cinematographer Roger Deakins reuniting with Villeneuve on the project. Deakins shot “Sicario” and “Prisoners.” Deakins has been nominated for 13 Best Conematography Academy Awards, including for “Sicario.”

Alcon Entertainment acquired the film, television and ancillary franchise rights in 2011 from the late producer Bud Yorkin and Cynthia Sikes Yorkin to produce prequels and sequels to the iconic science-fiction thriller. Cynthia Sikes Yorkin will produce along with Alcon co-chiefs Broderick Johnson and Andrew Kosove. Bud Yorkin will receive producer credit.

Scott will serve as executive producer. Frank Giustra and Tim Gamble, CEOs of Thunderbird Films, will also serve as executive producers along with Bill Carraro (“Terminator Genisys,” “The Golden Compass”).

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